06/23/2004 9:09 PM ET
Pena tapped as All-Star coach
Torre names Royals skipper to staff
By Dick Kaegel / MLB.com
KANSAS CITY -- The Royals have their first participant in the July 13 All-Star Game at Houston.
|Tony Pena is the ninth Royals manager to be selected for an All-Star coaching staff. (Ted S. Warren/AP)
Manager Tony Pena was named an American League coach Wednesday by New York Yankees manager Joe Torre.
Also selected as a coach was Toronto Blue Jays manager Carlos Tosca, a former manager in the Royals' minor league system.
"It's nice. Any time you get chosen to go to the All-Star Game, it's an honor," Pena said.
"When Joe asked me about it, I told him it's an honor to participate. I did it as a player five times, and, as a manager, for somebody to pick me out is big for me."
Pena made the National League All-Star team as a Pittsburgh Pirates catcher in 1982-84, '85 and '86, and with the St. Louis Cardinals in '89.
What Royals players did Pena think might accompany him to Houston?
"I don't have any control over that," he said. "I'll leave it to them to pick the players. If they ask me, I'll give my input."
The Royals' top candidates are center fielder Carlos Beltran, currently seventh in the outfield voting, and first basemen-designated hitters Ken Harvey and Mike Sweeney. Harvey is among the AL leaders in hitting and Sweeney has been named to the last four All-Star Games.
Last season, Pena was voted AL Manager of the Year by the Baseball Writers' Association of America, after leading the Royals to a turnaround season.
He is the ninth Royals manager to serve as an All-Star coach.
Dick Howser was a coach in 1982 and 1985 and was the AL manager in 1986 after the Royals won the World Series.
Others who were AL coaches: Bob Lemon, 1972; Jack McKeon, 1974; Whitey Herzog, 1978; Jim Frey, 1981; Hal McRae, 1992; Bob Boone, 1996, and Tony Muser, 2001.
Pena was moved by Torre's invitation.
"It touched me," Pena said. "I'm happy."
Dick Kaegel is
a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.